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Bank of America stopped offering student loans in 2010. However, if you bank with Bank of America and are looking to borrow student loans, you still have options. It’s usually best to start your search with federal student loans, but you can also search for private student loans with other national banks, credit unions and online lenders. If you have outstanding loans previously held by Bank of America, refinancing is still open to you.
Bank of America student loans overview
Up until 2010, Bank of America serviced private and federal student loans. Currently, Bank of America isn’t offering any student loan products, and it’s sold its student loan products to other loan servicers. With that said, you can still refinance and consolidate loans that were once held by Bank of America that are now held by a different servicer.
If you’re looking for new loans, federal student loans are the best place to start. They come with a fixed interest rate and offer federal protections and benefits that aren’t offered by private student loans.
If you need funds beyond what federal student loans provide, you can look into private student loans from other lenders. These are offered by national banks, like Discover and Citizens Bank, as well as credit unions and online lenders. With private student loans, it’s best to shop around with multiple lenders to find competitive rates for your financial situation.
Who services my Bank of America student loan?
If you borrowed private student loans from Bank of America, you can see who currently services your loans by checking your credit report. You can do this for free with each credit bureau once a week at AnnualCreditReport.com.
If Bank of America was your servicer for federal student loans, you can see who services your loan by logging in to the Federal Student Aid website using your Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID). You can also call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 800-433-3243.
What to do with old Bank of America student loans
If you took out student loans with Bank of America before 2010, you still have the option to refinance or consolidate them.
Refinancing student loans from Bank of America
Bank of America doesn’t offer student loan refinancing. However, if you took out student loans with the company before 2010, you can still refinance them with a different lender.
When you refinance your student loans, you pay off existing private or federal student loans using one private loan with a fixed monthly payment. This can help you organize your payments into a single loan and give you a lower interest rate. Remember that if your loans serviced by Bank of America are federally owned, you lose federal protections and benefits by refinancing.
Citizens Bank and Discover are two national banks that offer refinance loans, but sites like CommonBond, LendKey and College Ave offer refinancing as well. Before choosing a lender, shop around with at least three companies to ensure that you’re getting competitive rates and terms.
Consolidating federal student loans from Bank of America
You can also consolidate approved federal student loans once serviced by Bank of America. When you consolidate your loans, you take multiple federal student loans and consolidate them under one Direct Consolidation Loan with one monthly fixed payment. The difference between consolidation and refinancing is that you won’t change your interest rate through consolidation — in fact, you may end up paying more in interest over the life of your loan.
However, consolidation does preserve your federal protections, including the options to pause your payments through deferment and forbearance or access income-driven repayment plans. If you’re interested in consolidation, you can apply for a Direct Consolidation Loan on the Federal Student Aid website or contact your loan servicer with questions.
Possible alternatives to Bank of America student loans
Federal student loans are generally the best option as they come with various helpful programs, including forbearance and income-driven repayment plans. But, if you need to borrow more money than the federal loans provide, private loans may be a beneficial alternative.
Private loans can be used to cover the cost of tuition, room, board, fees and more. These loans are available from banks, online lenders and credit unions. Some of the best-known private loan options include Sallie Mae, Credible, College Ave, Earnest, LendKey, Citizens Bank and Ascent.
Bank of America exited the student loan business well over a decade ago. But there are many other private student loans available for those who may need additional funding for college-related expenses. The options include other banks, credit unions and online lenders.
For those who may still have a student loan with Bank of America that was taken out before 2010, you also have the option to refinance or consolidate your loan with a different lender.